St. Joseph Cathedral again this year is partnering with Spectrum Youth and Family Services to open a warming shelter for homeless youth.

The shelter will open Nov. 1 and be open until March 31.

The shelter — in the parish hall section of the cathedral — opens at 6 p.m. every day and closes at 8 a.m. except on Sundays when it closes at 7 a.m.

The warming shelter provides a safe place for youth to stay and receive support from the staff in whatever way they need. Residents will also have the option of being connected to a case manager for added support and housing navigation.

“Service connection is a huge piece of the warming shelter and will include connecting youth to Spectrum’s numerous other programs as well as other programs in the community,” said Mark Redmond, Spectrum’s executive director.

“The need for this was identified due to our other housing programs being full and our waitlist becoming lengthy.”

Father Lance Harlow, cathedral rector, said the parish is able to provide the space for the youth, and Spectrum is able to provide the staffing, “so it is a co-operative effort between our two institutions both devoted to relieving the sufferings of the poor.”

The Youth Warming Shelter had a successful first year, operating from November through March. Over that period, Spectrum housed 33 youth and averaged about 70 percent occupancy. Of those 33 youth, 11 of them were not known to Spectrum before the shelter opened.

For more information, contact Ellen Kane at ekane@vermontcatholic.org.

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